Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (2024)

Updated: April 24, 2021 by Mylene in Guides and Tips

Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (1)

Writing a formal email in French can be a challenge. Many people send multiple emails per day to recap an important meeting, to relay an important update, or simply to contact someone. If you’re looking for a job, you’ll also have to compose and send a cover letter.

Whether you want to make a good first impression or you want to write emails that get replies, you have to learn the basics. Sounding professional in French is not always easy. The key is to use the right formula for the right situation.

In France, the term “e-mail” is commonly used.

In this article, I’ll give you the sentences you need to write a professional email in French:

  • Use the proper greeting
  • Introduce yourself
  • Be 100% Formal
  • How to write “enclosed” for an attached file
  • Choose the right object
  • Closing
  • Re-read your email
  • Useful phrases
  • Add your signature
  • Infographic
  • Sample Email in French

How to write a formal email in French

1. Use the proper greeting

Being polite is important.

If you don’t know the name nor the gender of the recipient (le destinataire), use:

  • Madame, Monsieur,
  • Mesdames, Messieurs,

If you know the gender but not the name, then onlyMadame or Monsieur should be used.

Even if you know the recipient’s name, then Madame or Monsieur is still appropriate.

A formal relationship with someone whose title you know:

  • Madame la directrice,
  • Monsieur le Président,

A formal relationship with someone whose name you know:

  • Monsieur Untel,
  • Madame Dupont,
Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (2)

2. Introduce yourself

You have to explain the purpose of your email at first.

After the greetings, introduce your reason for writing. For instance, you can refer to an earlier in-person conversation with the recipient (le destinataire). For example:

  • Suite à notre entretien du 14 juin: Following up on our interview on June 14th…
  • The following phrases are good choices when your letter’s intent is to inquire about employment
    Je vous propose ma candidature pour le poste: I would like to submit my candidacy for the position
  • Je me réfère à votre annonce parue dans: with reference to your post advertised in
  • Votre annonce parue dans… a retenu toute mon attention: Yourpost advertised in… caught my attention
  • Je me permets de poser ma candidature pour le poste de… / au poste de: I wish to apply for the post of…
  • Je vous serais très reconnaissant/reconnaissante de : I would be very grateful if you could…
Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (3)

3. Be 100% Formal

When writing formal letters, always use “vous” and never “tu”.

When using you in the singular form, tu implies intimacy and informality, whereas vous is used in formal contexts.

Vous is always used when referring to a group.

4. How to write “enclosed” for an attached file

Most official documents have a title, so look for the title to insert the appropriate name of the document.

  • Veuillez trouver le document demandé en pièce: Please find the requested document as asked
  • Je vous joins mon CV: I enclose my resume
  • Veuillez trouver ci-joint mon CV: Please find attached my resume
Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (4)

5. Choose the right objet

However, just like an email in English, you’ll have a subject or in French “objet” which tells the recipient what the email is about. Choose a keyword that is professional. For example:

  • Candidature pour le poste de chef de projet: Application for the position of project manager
  • Location appartement: Apartment rental
  • Demande de renseignements: Information request
Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (5)

6. Closing

A French business email always ends with a formule de politesse, a closing formula.

Some typical formal ending formulas are:

  • Je vous prie d’agréer, (repeat the title as you started your letter), l’expression de mes salutations distinguées.: Yours sincerely.
  • Je vous prie d’agréer, Madame, Monsieur, l’expression de mes salutations distinguées.
  • Je vous prie d’agréer, Madame Intel, l’expression de mes salutations distinguées.

Another formal sentence would be:

  • Je vous prie d’agréer, (repeat the title as you started your letter), l’expression de mes salutations dévouées.
  • Je vous prie d’agréer, (repeat the salutation), l’expression de mes sentiments distingués.

The following sentence adds an extra thank you at the beginning for some extra respect points.

  • Avec mes remerciements, je vous prie de trouver ici, Madame, Monsieur, l’expression de mes sentiments distingués.

If you’re waiting on a response from someone in a formal situation, you can add “waiting for your response” to the beginning of one of these expressions:

  • Dans l’attente de votre réponse, je vous prie d’agréer, Monsieur/Madame, l’expression de mes salutations distinguées.
Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (6)

7. Re-read your email

Re-read your email out loud to ensure it makes sense. Byreadingthe wholeemail, it will save a lot of stress for you, your colleague, and the client. To avoid any complications and awkward situations you have to alwaysreadbusiness-relatedemailsvery carefully. Keep in mind that he or she may be having a super busy day so you need to be concise and provide all the necessary information.

So proofread your e-mail before sending. Take your time ! Check the list of recipients, title, content, attachments.

8. Useful phrases

You can embellish an email with the following common phrases :

  • J’ai une question concernant: I have a question about
  • Je serai disponible le: I’m available on
  • Je reste à votre entière disposition pour tout renseignement complémentaire: Please do not hesitate to contact me should you need any further information.
  • Nous vous remercions de votre compréhension: Thank you for your understanding

9. Add your signature

The signature is a tool to maintain contact with an interlocutor.

It can be found at the very end of your email. This is to provide the recipient with more detailed information and contact details of the sender. There are compulsory information which must appear in the signature, and which are the following:

  • First name and name
  • Position in the company
  • Legal status of the company
  • Full company address
  • Company Website
  • Sender or company phone number and email address

Additionally, you can include links to social media or the company logo in the signature. However, some users have blocked image files in emails for security reasons, it should therefore be ensured that the signature is acceptable without the logo.

5 ways to improve Your Professional email in French

  1. Use the proper greeting
  2. Introduce yourself
  3. Be 100% formal
  4. Choose the right object
  5. Use the proper closing
Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (7)

Sample Email in French

Objet: Candidature – Chef de projets

Madame Intel,
Votre annonce pour un poste de chef de projets a retenu toute mon attention.

Mes précédentes expériences m’ont permis de développer des compétences que je souhaite aujourd’hui mettre au service de votre entreprise.

Participer à l’évolution de votre structure serait une très belle opportunité.

En m’appuyant sur mes connaissances, mon sens de l’adaptation et mes expériences dans divers secteurs d’activités je suis convaincue d’avoir les qualités requises pour ce poste.

Je vous laisse le soin de découvrir mon parcours à la lecture de mon CV et j’aurais le plaisir de discuter de ce poste avec vous.

Dans l’attente de vous faire part de mes motivations, veuillez agréer, Madame, l’expression de mes sentiments distingués.

Mylène Bidule

Here how the French version translates to English:

Ms. Intel,

Your job posting for a project manager position caught my attention.

My previous experiences have allowed me to develop skills that I now want to put at the service of your company.

Participating in the evolution of your structure would be a great opportunity.

Based on my knowledge, my adaptability and my experience in various business sectors, I am convinced that I have the qualities required for this position.

I leave it to you to discover my background by reading my resume and I would have the pleasure to discuss this position with you.

Yours sincerely,
Mylène Bidule

Keep learning

This guide gives you the flexibility to tweak and the freedom to use any of the suggested sentences. In addition, the template is a good start for you to get inspired when writing a professional email in French. So, hope you’ll find it useful.

I have also published a number of how-to articles that you can check to learn how to think in French or also how to be successful when taking online courses.

Hand-picked related article

How to Learn French Better: 5 Keys for Success

Writing a Professional Email in French (Sample template included) - Master Your French (2024)

FAQs

How do you start a professional email in French? ›

In French, emails always start with Bonjour (Hello) or Bonsoir (Good evening), unlike letters, which usually start with Cher / Chère (Dear...). If you're not acquainted with the recipient, use Bonjour monsieur / madame,, meaning 'Hello Sir / Ma'am'.

How do you end an email to a teacher in French? ›

How to Sign off an Email in French
  1. Dans l'attente de votre réponse (formal) ...
  2. Veuillez recevoir, Monsieur/Madame, mes salutations distinguées (formal) ...
  3. Veuillez agréer l'expression de mes sentiments respectueux (formal) ...
  4. Cordialement (formal/semi-formal) ...
  5. Respectueusement (formal/semi-formal) ...
  6. Amitiés (informal)

How do you ask a question in an email in French? ›

Je m'adresse à vous avec la question suivante: I would like to ask you the following questions: Je voudrais vous poser les questions suivantes: I have taken the liberty of writing you to…

How do you introduce yourself in French email? ›

Introduce yourself – If you are writing to someone you do not know, your should introduce yourself in your first sentence ex. Je m'appelle Jane Smith. Je travaille en tant que la responsable de communication pour [l'entreprise X].

How do you introduce yourself professionally sample in French? ›

Je m'appelle (name), mais je me fais appeler (name) – My name is (name), but I prefer to be called (name) Je me présente – I'd like to introduce myself.
...
For example, your French friends can ask you:
  1. Comment vous appelez vous? ...
  2. Comment t'appelles tu? ...
  3. Quel est ton travail? ...
  4. D'où venez vous? ...
  5. Qu'est-ce que tu aimes faire?

How do you start professional email? ›

6 strong ways to start an email
  1. 1 Dear [Name] This email greeting is an appropriate salutation for formal email correspondence. ...
  2. 2 Hi or Hello. As far as email greetings go, an informal “Hi” followed by a comma is perfectly acceptable in most work-related messages. ...
  3. 3 Hi everyone, Hi team, or Hi [department name] team.
2 Jun 2022

How do you write a formal question in French? ›

Asking questions
  1. There are 3 main ways to ask a question in French: • Formal: (question word quand, où, etc) + verb + subject + ? ...
  2. • Neutral: (question word) + est-ce que + subject + verb + ? Est-ce que vous connaissez Victor Hugo ? ...
  3. • More informal: subject + verb (+ question word) + ? Elle travaille chez vous ?

How can I introduce myself in 10 lines in French? ›

Here are the most common:
  1. Je m'appelle… – I am … ...
  2. Je suis… – I am…
  3. Mon nom est… – My name is…
  4. Moi c'est… – I am… ...
  5. Mon prénom est… – My first name is…
  6. Je m'appelle (name), mais je me fais appeler (name) – My name is (name), but I prefer to be called (name)
  7. Je me présente – I'd like to introduce myself.
18 Sept 2022

How do you start a formal letter in French? ›

Begin with Monsieur, Madame or Mademoiselle followed by the recipient's full name, as in Monsieur Jacques Untel. This is polite form for both formal and informal letters. For a married couple, use Monsieur et Madame Untel.

Can you use Je suis to introduce yourself? ›

To introduce yourself, saying “je suis + name” is correct. For example, “Je suis Marie” (I'm Marie) or “Je suis Pierre” (I'm Pierre). However, the other common way to say “my name is” in French is: “Je m'appelle“, which literally means “I call myself”.

How do you sound professional in French? ›

10 Tricks to Sound So French That Natives Think You're One of 'Em
  1. Act as confident as possible.
  2. Find French equivalents to expressions you use in English.
  3. Twist your English mouth to make French pronunciations. ...
  4. The tactical use of bah.
  5. Adding quoi to the ends of sentences.
  6. Using eh, ah and hein like there's no tomorrow.
21 Apr 2022

How do you describe yourself in French examples? ›

To describe yourself, there are two important phrases: Je suis, meaning 'I am,' and J'ai, meaning 'I have. ' To describe their height, men say 'Je suis grand' or 'Je suis petit. ' Women use grande or petite. Both men and women say Je suis de taille moyenne.

What are 3 good intro to a professional email? ›

Some suitable opening email phrases include:
  • Let me introduce myself.
  • First, let me introduce myself.
  • Please allow me to introduce myself.
  • I wanted to introduce myself.
  • I would like to introduce myself through email.
29 Oct 2021

How do you start the first sentence in an email? ›

Examples of Opening Sentences for Emails
  1. I hope you're well.
  2. I hope this email finds you well.
  3. Hope you're having a great week so far.
  4. Hope you had a lovely weekend.
  5. Hope you had a lovely vacation.
  6. Thanks for letting me know.
  7. Thanks for reaching out.
  8. Thanks for getting in touch.
22 Sept 2022

What are the 17 verbs in French? ›

allé, arrivé, venu, revenu, entré, rentré, descendu, devenu, sorti, parti, resté, retourné, monté, tombé, né et mort.

What are the 20 verbs in French? ›

Master French conjugation: 20 Most widely used French verbs and their conjugation
  • Être (to be)
  • Avoir (to have)
  • Aller (to go)
  • Parler (to speak/talk)
  • Faire (to do)
  • Prendre (to take)
  • Vouloir (to want)
  • Savoir (to know)
12 Sept 2022

What are the big 4 verbs in French? ›

Big 4 French verbs
  • etre = to be.
  • avoir = to have.
  • aller = to go.
  • faire = to do.

How are you in French formal response? ›

How to Reply to “How are You?” in French
  1. Bien, merci ! – “Good, thanks!” ...
  2. Ça va – “It goes” ...
  3. Ça roule – “It rolls” ...
  4. Comme ci, comme ça – “Okay” ...
  5. Pas mal – “Not bad” ...
  6. Comme d'hab – “Same as always” ...
  7. Tout va bien – “All good” ...
  8. Assez bien – “Well enough” or “quite well”

What are good French questions? ›

  • Où sont les toilettes ? (e) Where is the bathroom?
  • Comment vas-tu ? (e) How are you? ...
  • Comment t'appelles-tu ? (e) What's your name? ...
  • Quel est ton numéro de téléphone ? (e) What's your phone number? ...
  • Quel âge as-tu ? (e) How old are you? ...
  • D'où venez-vous ? (e) ...
  • Qu'est-ce que c'est? (s) ...
  • Qu'avez-vous dit ? (s)

How do you practice a French conversation? ›

  1. What's the Best Way to Study French for Speaking? ...
  2. 4 Steps Method to Improve How You Speak French. ...
  3. Speak French To Your Cat. ...
  4. Practice Talking Out-loud With a French Q&A. ...
  5. Speak French To Your Smartphone. ...
  6. Ideally, Find Someone to Practice Speak French. ...
  7. Translate From English to French.
21 Apr 2022

What are 10 French words? ›

Learn Some Common French Words
  • Bonjour = Hello, Good morning.
  • Au revoir = Goodbye.
  • Oui = Yes.
  • Non = No.
  • Merci = Thank you.
  • Merci beaucoup = Thank you very much.
  • Fille = Girl.
  • Garçon = Boy.

How can I introduce myself in 5 lines? ›

You can use the below phrases to introduce yourself:
  1. I don't think we've met (before).
  2. I think we've already met.
  3. My name is ...
  4. I'm ...
  5. Nice to meet you; I'm ...
  6. Pleased to meet you; I'm ...
  7. Let me introduce myself; I'm ...
  8. I'd like to introduce myself; I'm ...
1 Sept 2021

What are some French sentence starters? ›

10 Simple French Sentences to Get Started with Basic Conversation
  • Comment vous appelez-vous? (What's your name?)
  • Enchanté(e)! ...
  • Je viens de… (I'm from…)
  • J'habite à… (I live in…)
  • Qu'est-ce que vous faites? (What is your profession?)
12 Apr 2022

How do I write myself in French essay? ›

Expert-Verified Answer
  1. Je m'appelle ________(your name).
  2. J' ai ______ (your age) ans.
  3. J' habite à _______(the place you live).
  4. Je suis ________(your nationality).
  5. Je suis grande et très intelligent.
  6. J' aime ________(name the things you like). ...
  7. Je détesté _________ (name the things you don't like).
10 Oct 2018

How do you greet someone professionally in French? ›

The most important French greetings include bonjour (hello), enchanté(e) (nice to meet you), bonsoir (good evening/hello), salut (hi), coucou (hey), Ça fait longtemps, dis donc (long time no see), Âllo (hello), Ça va? (how are you?), tu vas bien? (have you been well?), quoi de neuf? (what's up?), au revoir!

What are the most common phrases in French? ›

Useful French Phrases for Conversation
  1. Bonjour! ( Good morning, hello)
  2. Bienvenue. ( Welcome.)
  3. Madame/Monsieur/Mademoiselle (Mrs. / Mr. / ...
  4. Pardon, excusez-moi. ( Pardon, excuse me.)
  5. Parlez-vous anglais? ( Do you speak English ?)
  6. Je ne parle pas français. ( ...
  7. À tout à l'heure! ( ...
  8. Merci/Merci beaucoup. (

How do you structure an email in French? ›

Or you can be more formal, and write your email like you'd write a letter: Monsieur, madame, (= Dear Sir / Madam, cold and formal, if you don't know who's going to read the letter.) Cher monsieur, (= Dear Sir, warmer but still formal) Chère madame, (= Dear Madam, same but for a woman)

How do you greet someone in a formal letter in French? ›

The formule d'appel (roughly, “formal greeting”)

This can be as simple as “Madame,” or “Monsieur,” if the recipient doesn't know you, or “Cher Monsieur,/Chère Madame,” (“Dear Sir,/Dear Madam,”) if the recipient knows you.

How do you end a French letter politely? ›

Veuillez recevoir, Monsieur/Madame, mes salutations distinguées is used for general business or formal letters. This phrase is similar to "yours sincerely" in a letter written in English.

How do you formally address someone in French? ›

The two main forms of address you will need to use are “Monsieur” (Dear Sir) and “Madame” (Dear Madame), used when addressing men and women, respectively. If you know the name of the person, you should use it afterwards (e.g. Monsieur John Doe, Madame Jane Doe, and so forth.)

What is a formal French greeting? ›

The most common greeting in French is the very useful “bonjour”, and “bonsoir”. The first can be used throughout the day, and the second in the evening. “Salut” is also widely used in a more informal setting. These are the most basic greetings that will commonly be learned in lessons for French for kids.

How do you say hello in a professional manner? ›

There are many other options, but here are six of the most common formal ways to say “hello”:
  1. “Hello!”
  2. “Good morning.”
  3. “Good afternoon.”
  4. “Good evening.”
  5. “It's nice to meet you.”
  6. “It's a pleasure to meet you.” (These last two only work when you are meeting someone for the first time.)
29 Jun 2021

How do you end a formal French letter? ›

To summarize, here are some great options for closing a formal letter: Je vous prie d'agréer, X, l'expression de mes salutations distinguées/ mes sentiments distingués- The literal translation doesn't sum up the meaning, but it's a way to close a very formal letter in French.

What is your email address in French formal? ›

The French translation for “What is your e-mail address? (formal)” is Quelle est votre adresse email ?.

What is the official French word for email? ›

The Académie Française (French Academy) chose courriel, pronounced "koo ryehl" as the official French word for "email," but that doesn't necessarily mean the French person on the street uses it.

How do you respond to good morning in French? ›

What is the proper response to bonjour? It's more than sufficient to simply say bonjour back in response to those who greet you, but if you want to go a step beyond, you can respond with comment allez-vous, which is the French equivalent of asking how it's going.

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